homepageTips and tricks from people with spinal cord injuries (SCI).
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Carrying, moving and handling objects: all 147 tips and ideas

147 tips and ideas 
Accessible deskAccessible desk
Desk with double work surface and accessible control panel for electric outlets
Key ring taped to a Clas Ohlson catalogueAdaptation for book or magazine
A key ring taped to a book makes it possible for a person with impaired hand function to handle the book
User moves bowlAdapted bowl for microwave oven
Cord attached to a bowl works as handle and enables a person without dexterity to grasp the bowl and move it
Extra handle attached to a doorAdapted door for wheelchair users
An extra handle close to the door hinges makes it easier for a person who drives a wheelchair to close a door
Adapted car key with large gripAdapted grip for car keys
Customized grip for car keys suitable for persons with impaired hand function
User holds his phone with help of the loopAdapted Iphone and Iphone holder on wheelchair
A simple way to be able to pick upp the phone and to attach it to the wheelchair - suitable for persons with impaired handfunction
Pen holder attached on wheelchairAdapted pen in penholder on wheelchair
Penholder for adapted pen on electrical wheelchair - suitable for persons with impaired handfunction
The user holds the radio, little finger inserted in key ringAdapted radio
Simple modifications make a transistor radio manageable for a person with impaired hand function
Shower handle with selecta band (close-up)Adapted shower handle
"Selecta band" on shower handle makes it possible for persons without dexterity to hold on in the shower
User gets a battery out of the car trunkAluminum hook
A gripping aid to reach into the car trunk - suitable for wheelchair users
Aluminum suitcasesAluminum suitcases
Aluminum suitcases for storage of fragile items such as music and computer accessories - can also be used as support or tray on lap for wheelchair users
Echo dot. Picture from www.amazon.comAmazon Echo Dot
A voice controlled device used as an environmental control, to play music, to surf on the internet, and much more
Mounting plateAttaching wheelchair and seat belt in modified car
Modifications that make it safe for a person with disabilities to drive while seated in a manual wheelchair
Attachment on wheelchair armrestAttachment on wheelchair
A holder on the wheelchair is practical for attaching various objects – suitable for persons with impaired hand function
Automatic wastebasketAutomatic bathroom wastebasket
Wastebasket opens without having to touch it – suitable for people with disabilities
Backpack on wheelchair with rain cover onBackpack with integrated raincover
- practical for wheelchair users
Bag with sliding board, attached to user’s wheelchair. Photo: Katharina RatzkaBag for folding sliding board
Custom-sewn bag for sliding board that can be attached to the wheelchair
Bag sitting on user's feet on wheelchair footrestsBag on wheelchair
A practical bag for wheelchair users. The user can keep an eye on the bag at the same time that it keeps the user's feet in place.
The user transports firewood using a cart carrying a garden basketBasket on wheels for firewood
- a simple way for wheelchair users to transport firewood
User removes lid with can openerBattery-operated can opener
Automatic can opener – suitable for persons with impaired hand function
Glass bottle with snap lockBottle seal
Cork med snap lock suitable for persons with impaired hand function
String tied to briefcase handleBriefcase with customized handle
A string tied to the briefcase handle enables persons with impaired dexterity to pick it up
Programmable wall outletsBus system for electrical installations
The bus system makes it possible to control all electrical functions in the house from one transmitter; suitable for persons with extensive disabilities
Wall-mounted can openerCan opener
Can opener with wall bracket.
Service dog fetches a newspaperCarry, hold, fetch – help from service dog
A service dog can provide everyday help to wheelchair users by carrying, fetching, or holding objects
Closet with open doorCloset without plinth
Adapted closet that makes it easier for a person in a wheelchair to come close to pick out clothing and objects
Plastic bag sealed with ClosemanClosing device "Closeman"
Easy-to-use universal device to close both hard and soft packages – suitable for persons with impaired hand function
Combi stroller with soft fabric carrierCombi stroller with soft fabric carrier
A Combi-stroller works well for parents with disabilities who have young children
User next to table with control units for TV, etcControl for TV, stereo, etc
Remote controls with foam rubber and writing stick make it possible for persons with impaired hand function to use TV, stereo, etc
User controls a sewing machine with her forearmControlling sewing machine with arms
Technique to control sewing machine for wheelchair users
The user holds the popsicle stick using the custom-designed holder.Custom-designed holder for popsicle stick
- enable people with impaired hand function to hold a popsicle stick
User picks up the mobile phone’s plexiglas handle with thumbCustomized handle for mobile phone
Custom modification to phone for persons with impaired hand function
Device consists of aquarium net with modified passive handle and forearm supportDevice for picking things up from floor
A device to help pick objects up from the floor for people with disabilities and impaired hand function.
Dog training for service dogDog training
Dog training for service dogs provides assistance in daily life to people with disabilities
Shelf with drawers in living roomDresser drawers with handles
Handle on dresser drawers appropriate for persons with impaired hand function
Easy handle on boxed wine; user taps wine by pushing the handle upEasy Handle - a handle for the boxed wine
Assistive device for tapping wine out of a box - suitable for people with impaired hand function
Bottle opener shown from aboveEasy-grip bottle opener
Bottle opener that can be used by persons with impaired hand function
Remote control with raised buttonsEasy-to-use remote control
Large raised buttons on remote control are easy to manipulate for persons with impaired hand function.
Wall switch for electric door lock openerElectric door lock opener
Enables a person with disabilities to unlock a door by pushing a button
Helena in elevator; she presses elevator button with wheelchair frontwheelElevator and elevator buttons
Control elevator with wheelchair footrests/front wheels – an option for people without arm/hand function
Entrance telephoneEntrance telephone
Entrance telephone makes it possible to speak with someone standing outside the door and enables to open and lock the door from the bed
Entrance to house with string as door closerEntrance to house with simple door closer
Wheelchair users can close outward-opening doors by using a simple home-made door closer
Control ProgEnvironmental control
- facilitates remote control of TVs, CD players, VCRs, phones, and other electrical appliances
Gewa Prog transmitter  in holderEnvironmental control system on bed
An environmental control system that can be operated from the bed is suitable for persons with high spinal cord injuries
The user training in the gym using exercise aids. Photo: www.activehands.co.ukExercise aids
Exercise Aids allowing indenpendent gymtraining för persone with impaired handfunction
User turns on air exchangerExtension of string to turn air heat exchanger on and off
- makes it possible for a person who uses a wheelchair to turn on/off
User puts remote control unit in a fabric bag on lapFabric bag for control units
Convenient storage for remote control units, always accessible, suitable for persons with disabilities
User transports hay on hand cart.Feed horses
Hay for horses is transported by hand truck
Flower box on wheelsFlower box on wheels
Portable flower box on patio - suitable for wheelchair users
User rakes leaves into wheelbarrowFolding lightweight wheelbarrow
A lightweight wheelbarrow that is easy on the back – suitable for persons who have problems lifting and/or bending
User in garage by extra door which is hooked openGarage that still works during power failure
Through a simple modified door, the user can leave the garage even in a power failure
Gewa progress, mounted on the inside of the wheelchair armrestGewa Progress - advanced remote control
Well arranged, high-capacity infrared transmitter for environmental control system
User closes the door using a grab barGrab bar as door closer
- a simple way to close doors - suitable for wheelchair users
Can opener is used to operate pepper millGrip device for pepper mill
A can opener that is also useful for a pepper mill – suitable for persons with impaired hand function
The user hammering using the gripping aid. Photo: www.activehands.co.uk Gripping Aid
A gripping aid to improve grippfunction and to facilitate everyday activities for persons with impaired handfunction
Handbag strapped into wheelchair seat beltHandbag on wheelchair
- an easy way to attach a handbag
User opens refrigerator doorHandle for refrigerator and freezer
A handle that makes it easier to open the refrigerator and freezer – suitable for people with impaired hand function
Handle on doorHandle on door as door closer
A handle on the door makes it possible for a wheelchair user to close the door after entering or leaving room
User holding a bottle with ring finger in the device’s ring (close-up)Hold and transport a bottle
A small specially designed assistive device for persons without active hand function, which makes it possible to take a bottle out of the cooler and to transport it
Transmitter on strap that holds thighs togetherHolder for transmitter of environmental control
The transmitter sits on a strap that holds the thighs together.
Bottle holder on wheelchairHolder for water bottle on wheelchair
Thanks to the bottle holder you will always have your water bottle with you - suitable for persons using a wheelchair
Homemade handle, with and without key ring, on remote control and phoneHomemade handle
Homemade handle of cernit clay with and without key ring
Lid opener, photo from www.euforia.seJar and bottle opener suitable for people with weak hands
Jar and bottle opener that can work for people with extremely impaired hand function
Wooden key holderKey holder, an assistive device for keys
People with impaired hand function achieve a better grip and more force
Key holder, metal rodKey holder, metal rod
A device for handling keys for persons with physical disabilities and impaired hand function
Wallet with key ring in zipperKey ring in zipper
Persons with impaired dexterity can use a zipper if they attach a key ring to the zipper tab.
Key ring in portfolio zipperKey ring in zipper
Persons with impaired dexterity can use a zipper if they attach a key ring to it.
User closes jacket zipper using a "bite tug" in the zipperKey ring with "bite tug"
A user with extensive disabilities can use a "bite tug" to help pull up a zipper on a jacket
User relieves pressure on seat by leaning forward on trayLap tray that stays on lap
Tray with many applications for people who drive a wheelchair
User puts on a wheelLifting a wheelchair out of a passenger car
Technique for people with strong arms
Bed unit fitted with headphones and contact for blowing.Listen to radio and control bed
Opportunity to listen to radio in bed without disturbing a partner; suitable for persons who have compromised hand/arm function.
Locking knob, attached to doorLocking knob that makes it easier to open door lock
Assistive device for persons with impaired hand function to be able to handle a locking knob
User at electricity cabinetLow-mounted electrical box with circuit breakers
- Suitable for wheelchair users
Door closer with stringLow-tech door closer
Solution enables wheelchair users to close doors that open outwards after coming inside
Magazine holder with leather shoelace as handleMagazine holder with handle
A modification that enables persons with physical disabilities and impaired hand function to handle magazine holders.
User picks up keys from floor using the magnet.Magnet for picking up metal objects from the floor
Suitable for persons with impaired hand function and who find it difficult to bend over to reach the floor
Elevator opener made of orthotic materialMechanical elevator opener
An emergency solution that makes it possible for a user in a wheelchair with impaired hand function to open the elevator door from the inside, if this should not occur automatically
Milk container with handleMilk container with large handle
– aids people with impaired hand function
Mobile laundry basketMobile laundry basket
Laundry basket on casters is convenient for wheelchair users
Modified car keyModified car key
- suitable for people with impaired hand function
Modified milk container holderModified milk container holder
A strap taped to the milk container holder works well for persons with impaired hand function.
User picks a cup up from the floor using the modified rod.Modified rod
- enables people with extensive disabilities to pick objects up from the floor
Abilia transmitter adapted with 3M BumponModified transmitter for environmental control system
Self-adhesive 3M Bumpons on the transmitter facilitates control for people with impaired hand function
The motion detector sits on the ceiling next to the lightMotion detector as switch for light
Replace difficult to reach switch with motion detector
The user opens/closes the trunk by remote controlMotorized car trunk
Motorized car trunk aids persons with disabilities
User with mouth stickMouth stick
An important assistive device for a person with a high spinal cord injury that can be used in many different situations
NutcrackerNutcracker
A nutcracker makes it easier to open screw tops – suitable for people with impaired hand function
User stabilizes her index finger with her thumbOpen a desk drawer
Opening a desk drawer with the index finger, a technique that works for persons without dexterity
User opens sliding doorOpen and close terrace door in adapted house
A simple modification enables a person with a high spinal cord injury to open and close a sliding door without assistance
Service dog opens a closet doorOpen, close doors – help from service dog
A service dog can provide everyday help to people with disabilities by opening/closing doors or drawers
User removes hot baking dish from ovenOven in modified kitchen
Oven with side-hinged door makes it easier for wheelchair users with impaired balance to place bakeware in oven and to remove it
User hits object (phone) under table with towel to bring it closerPicking things up from the floor
Towel and plastic bag that a person with impaired hand function can use to pick things up from the floor.
The milk carton is on the floor next to the user's wheelchair wheel and she places a towel next to it.Picking things up from the floor with a towel
A towel can serve as an assistive device for persons with impaired hand function to pick up objects from the floor.
User holds playing card; driving licence is on floorPicking up small objects from the floor
Persons without finger function use a playing card to pick small objects up from the floor.
User opens a pivot-hung windowPivot-hung window
- suitable for wheelchair users
User lifts in wheelchair framePlacing a wheelchair into a passenger car
Technique for people with strong arms
Plastic bag holderPlastic bag holder
A practical and secure way to bring along bags.
Plastic basketPlastic basket to move objects
A basket for moving objects, appropriate for wheelchair users.
User with basket on lapPlastic transport basket
Facilitates shopping and transporting objects - suitable for wheelchair users
PliersPliers
Passive pliers. Used for reaching, getting to and picking up things.
User gets a cup from the upper cabinet using pliersPliers to reach things in high deep cabinets
Wheelchair users can reach things that are farther away with pliers.
Sliding board with handlePull-out board with custom handle
A handle in orthotic material makes it possible for a person with impaired hand function to pull out a sliding board
Radio standing on edge (close-up)Radio by the bed
Radio placed on its edge to enable persons with impaired arm/hand function to reach all buttons when lying in bed.
Reach extenderReach extender for use on motorboat (and other purposes)
Strong reach extender appropriate for use on boat – suitable for wheelchair users
Adapted remote controlRemote control for wall radio
The remote control unit for the radio is always accessible from the bed
User pulls out oven rack with aluminum pliersRemove hot baking sheet from oven
Universal pliers make it easy to take a hot baking sheet out of the oven – suitable for persons with impaired hand function
Scissors with table support, closedScissors with table support
Adapted scissors for persons with impaired hand function
Service Dog ZoeService Dog Zoe
Service dog provides daily living assistance for people with disabilities
Serving cart with large handlesServing cart with large handle
Wheelchair users with impaired hand function need a serving cart with a large handle at the right height; large wheels are preferable
Door with cord that serves as door closer. Photo: Katharina RatzkaSimple mechanical door closer
Simple solution to close an outward opening door from inside - suitable for wheelchair users
Sliding door with brass handles (close-up)Sliding door to bedroom, etc
Sliding door with large handles – suitable for wheelchair users who have impaired hand function
User holds up coffee table with one handSmall lightweight coffee table
The coffee table is lightweight and easy to move - suitable for wheelchair users
User drinks teaSmall wheelchair table for tea cup
Cup with straw on wheelchair table enables persons with extensive disabilities to drink unassisted
Dressing hookSpecialanpassad påklädningskrok Customized dressing hook
Assistive device with many applications for wheelchair users
User resets circuit breakers high up on the wall using a squeegeeSqueegee, an assistive device for circuit breakers
Wheelchair users can use a squeegee to reset circuit breakers.
Stand extended on wheelchair attachmentStand – the user’s “third hand”
A telescopic slide-out iron rod/stand to which many types of equipment can be attached. This stand enables a user who does not have any active hand function to hold on to various types of equipment.
User washes a chandelier while standing in the standing wheelchairStanding wheelchair
Standing wheelchair facilitates housework – suitable for wheelchair users
User standing in standing wheelchairStanding wheelchair
People who use a wheelchair can increase their independence at home by using a standing wheelchair and they can also stretch their leg joints.
User’s wheelchair with customized belt attached to the sideStorage bags attached to wheelchair
Convenient storage for incontinence supplies for toilet visits outside the home
Holder for remote control units on swivel telephone armStorage for remote control for radio/phone
Remote control units that sit on a firm surface are easier to use for persons with impaired hand function
Shelf by patioStorage shelf by patio
Practical wooden shelf makes it easy for a wheelchair user to set the table
Net attached to wheelchair frame under seatStorage under wheelchair
Extra room under wheelchair for storing objects
User holds string tied to a loopString to pick binders up from the floor
A piece of string is a simple assistive device for persons with physical disabilities and impaired hand function to pick binders up from the floor
User transports a suitcase on suitcase holderSuitcase holder
Hinged suitcase holder – simple way for wheelchair user to transport suitcases
User opens zipper on outer jacketTechnique to pull down the zipper of an outer jacket
Using a key ring attached to the zipper - technique for people with extensive disabilities
Telescoping ramps on motorboatTelescoping ramps on motorboat
Telescoping ramp is used to bring electric wheelchair onto motorboat.
Multi-tier platterThree-tier serving platter
Multi-tier serving platter that a person with impaired hand function can lift and hold
Toothpaste tube with flip-top lid, openToothpaste tube with large flip-top lid
Flip-top lid makes it easier for persons with impaired dexterity to open toothpaste tube
User with her service dogTrain a service dog by ‘clicking’
– a training method for service dogs
User transports glass of water on tray on lapTransporting objects
Trays make it easy for wheelchair users to transport objects
User transports a milk containerTray
Plastic lid for microwave oven – suitable as a tray for wheelchair users
Tray placed on lap when person sits in wheelchairTray that sits steadily on lap
Tray appropriate for people who sit in a wheelchair
Tray on user’s lapTray to hold on lap
Tray suitable for persons using a wheelchair
User with tray on lap. User bakes pizzaTray with thermal insulation used as work table
A large tray with thermal insulation provides practical workspace in the kitchen for wheelchair users.
Trivet on counterTrivet
Practical kitchen utensil for easy transfers of hot pots – suitable for people with disabilities
User with writing stickUniversal holder on wrist bandage
Holder for flatware and typing sticks sewn onto wrist bandage, suitable for persons without wrist function or finger dexterity
Universal knobUniversal knob for doors, stove and lock
Portable and adapted handle that enlarges and therefore makes it easier for a person with impaired hand function to twist/open/close various types of lock and stove knobs.
Universal rodUniversal rod with molded handle
Assistive device for writing and for picking up various objects for persons with impaired dexterity.
The user holds the universal rod with his wrist in one cradle and small finger in the metal loopUniversal rod – description
A specially designed universal rod to retrieve both light and heavy objects – suitable for persons with compromised arm/hand function
User picks up remote control unitUniversal rod – use
Custom-designed rod enables persons with compromised arm/hand function to reach, retrieve and handle a number of different objects.
User dials a phone numberUsing cordless landline phone
Handsfree headset for cordless phone – a good aid for persons with impaired hand function
Wagon for sitski. Photo: Ronny PerssonWagon for sitski
Facilitates transporting the sitski
User shows a bottle with crocheted coverWater bottle with crocheted cover
....makes the bottle easy to grip and easy to bring along - suitable for people with impaired hand function
User with remote control to wheelchair crane; photo from Autoadapt, www.autoadapt.seWheelchair crane for car
Wheelchair crane that lifts a manual wheelchair into and out of the car trunk – suitable for people with disabilities and low strength
User lifts his scooter into the carWheelchair crane for moving a scooter in and out of the car
- suitable for people with disabilities
Wine bottle opener and foil cutterWine bottle opener with gas cartridge
Easy to use wine bottle opener – suitable for persons with impaired hand function
Adapted wireless switchWireless switch
Adapted wireless remote control for switch